Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has urged world powers to take a hard line against Iran in negotiations aimed at reviving the international nuclear deal.
Bennett made the comments on Sunday as senior defense and intelligence officials traveled to Washington to discuss… Failed conversations.
Israel was watching with interest as world powers Sit with Iran In Vienna hoping to restore the torn 2015 deal. Last week, Iran took a hard line as talks resumed, suggesting that everything discussed in previous diplomatic rounds could be renegotiated.
Wasel Iranian progress In its atomic program increased the stakes.
“I call on every country negotiating with Iran in Vienna to take a strong stand and make clear to Iran that it cannot enrich uranium and negotiate at the same time,” Bennett told his cabinet on Sunday.
Iran must start paying the price for its violations.
The original agreement, led by then-President Barack Obama, gave Iran, much needed it, relief from crippling economic sanctions in exchange for limits on its nuclear activities. But then-President Donald Trump, with strong encouragement from Israel, withdrew from the deal in 2018, leading to its unraveling.
Talks resumed last week in Vienna after a hiatus of more than five months and were the first involving the new hardline Iranian government.
The European and American negotiators expressed their disappointment with the Iranian positions and questioned whether the talks would succeed.
Israel has long opposed the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, saying it did not go far enough to halt the country’s nuclear program nor address what it sees as hostile Iranian military activity across the region.
Prominent voices in Israel are now indicating that the US withdrawal, especially without a contingency plan for Iran’s nuclear plan, which is constantly working on nuclear development, was a grave mistake.
But Israel’s new government maintained a stance similar to that of former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, refusing to return to the original deal and calling for diplomacy to be accompanied by military pressure on Iran.
‘maximum pressure’ penalties
After the collapse of the agreement, Iran escalated its nuclear activities. Iran is now enriching small amounts of uranium to up to 60 percent purity — a short step from weapons manufacturing levels of 90 percent. Iran also spins advanced centrifuges banned under the deal, and its uranium stockpile now exceeds the deal’s limits.
For now, Iran has shown no signs of backing down. Its chief negotiator, Deputy Foreign Minister Ali Bagheri Kani, suggested this weekend that Iran plans to give a third list of demands to its counterparts. These include proposed compensation after two pages of claims last week.
“Any penalties that violate and do not comply with [deal] Bagheri Kani for Al Jazeera. “All sanctions that have been imposed or reimposed under the so-called maximum pressure campaign of the United States must be removed immediately.”
As Iran’s new President Ebrahim Raisi campaigned for sanctions relief, it was felt that his negotiators were now launching their own maximum pressure campaign.
Last week, the United Nations’ International Atomic Energy Agency confirmed that Iran has started Uranium enrichment up to 20% purity at an underground facility in Fordow, as a site the deal prohibited from conducting any enrichment.
Iran also said this over the weekend Tested surface-to-air missile defense system Near the Natanz nuclear facility. Late on Saturday, people living nearby saw a light in the sky and heard a loud explosion.
“Any threat from the enemies will be met with a decisive and firm response,” state television quoted Lieutenant Commander Ali Maazni as saying.
President Joe Biden said the United States was ready to re-enter the agreement, although the United States was not a direct participant in the latest round of talks due to Washington’s withdrawal. Instead, American negotiators were nearby and were briefed by other participants – including three European powers, China and Russia.
Although Israel was also not a party to the negotiations, it made sure to maintain lines of communication with its American and European allies during the talks, which are set to resume this week.
Israeli intelligence chief David Barnea flew to Washington late on Saturday on a previously unannounced trip, and Defense Minister Benny Gantz will leave on Wednesday for meetings with his US counterpart Lloyd Austin and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken. Foreign Minister Yair Lapid visited London and Paris last week to discuss talks with Israel’s European allies.
Bennett said Israel is using the time between tours to persuade the Americans to “use a different toolkit” against Iran’s nuclear program, without going into details.
Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper reported that Mossad chief Barnea is expected to provide US officials with “up-to-date intelligence on Tehran’s efforts” regarding its nuclear activities.
The newspaper said that Barnea will convey Israel’s messages to intensify sanctions on Iran as well as put a real military threat on the table against Tehran. He will also inform Washington that Israel will not be bound by any nuclear agreement with Tehran and will continue efforts to suppress Iranian nuclear activity.
It is widely believed that Israel and the United States carried out covert operations against Iran’s nuclear cadres and infrastructure in an attempt to sabotage the programme.
The current Israeli government has objected to a return to the 2015 agreement, calling instead for an agreement that addresses other Iranian military behavior, including its missile program and support for armed groups such as Lebanon’s Hezbollah.
Israel also supported the “credible” military threat against Iran as leverage.
A senior State Department official said negotiators expected Iran to show “seriousness” in the talks. He said that even Russia and China, Iran’s important trading outlets that have traditionally taken a softer line in their relations with the country, left talks last week worried about prospects for a deal.
“Every day that passes is a day we come close to concluding that they are not thinking of returning to the JCPOA at short notice,” said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to brief reporters on the United States. Assess.
He said Iran could use the talks as a cover to continue building its nuclear program, which it could then use as leverage.
European negotiators also expressed frustration with the Iranians. Senior diplomats from Germany, the United Kingdom and France said Iran had “accelerated its nuclear program” and “backtracked on diplomatic progress”.
“It is unclear how these new gaps can be filled in a realistic time frame based on Iranian drafts,” they said.
Iran has asserted that its atomic program is peaceful. However, US intelligence agencies and international inspectors have said Iran had a regulated nuclear weapons program until 2003. Nonproliferation experts fear that any brinkmanship could push Iran toward more extreme measures to try to force the West to lift sanctions.